LEBANON, Tenn. – Aaron Wilkerson tossed seven shutout innings, running his scoreless innings streak to 48.1, and Tommy Winegardner and Cory Farris both homered in the first inning, leading 17th-ranked Cumberland to a 10-0 victory over seventh-ranked Union University on Friday at Ernest L. Stockton Field.
The Bulldogs (26-11, 7-3 TranSouth) won the shortened game with 10 runs on 13 hits, capped by T.J. Murphy’s single down the rightfield line in the seventh, plating Antonio Butler. Murphy, Winegardner, Farris and David Fanshawe all collected two hits apiece in the victory, while Farris and Fanshawe both had three RBIs.
Mike Mandarino and Farris both scored three times as well for Cumberland, which won its seventh straight game and pulled within a game of the league leader.
Union (24-7, 8-2) managed just three hits and three walks against Wilkerson (7-0), who lowered his earned-run-average to 0.35 for the season. The righthander struck out seven and has now allowed just 22 hits with 49 strikeouts in 55.0 innings of work this season. He was named the Music City Star of the Game for his efforts.
Union starter Kevin Kirksey (4-2) last three-plus innings, allowing seven runs, five earned, on nine hits. The righthander walked two, struck out one and watched his ERA rise from 0.80 before the game to 1.96.
The Bulldogs scored three times in the first inning to take an early lead, in part because of a two-out error by Union.
Winegardner blasted a 3-1 fastball from Kirksey over Spring Street and high off a power poll with two outs in the inning. Mandarino then reached on an error by shortstop Danny Grimm and Farris took advantage, belting a 2-1 pitch in the middle of the plate to nearly the same spot as Winegardner’s homer, giving CU a 3-0 advantage after one inning.
The Bulldogs added two more runs in the third inning on three hits, starting with back-to-back singles from Mandarino and Farris. Tommy Crews drew a four-pitch walk and Fanshawe lined out to center, plating a run. A one-out single to right from Jesse Bowman gave CU a 5-0 lead.
Cumberland plated four more runs in the fourth, as Murphy walked to leadoff and Winegardner followed with a single, ending the day for Kirksey.
Mandarino then walked and Farris reached on an error by first baseman Oscar Depablos, allowing a run to score. Crews’ groundout scored another run and Fanshawe’s single to center past a drawn-in infield pushed across two more runs for a 9-0 advantage.
In the seventh Butler beat out and infield single and Greg Appleton was hit before Murphy recorded his second hit of the day, a single down the rightfield line that easily plated Butler to end the game early.
Cumberland and Union conclude the series Saturday with a doubleheader starting at Noon.